South Korea's financial regulator lays groundwork for ICO regulations

South Korea’s 2017 ban on initial coin offerings (ICOs) may soon be overturned following calls by the country’s financial regulatory agency to include crypto token fundraising in the country’s Capital Market Act.

According to a report by Money Today on Tuesday, Do Gyu-sang, vice chairman of South Korea’s Financial Services Commission (FSC), called for expedited action on ICO regulations.

Appearing before the Political Affairs Committee of the South Korean National Assembly on November 17, the FSC vice chairman stated that ICOs have to be included in the country’s Capital Market Act.


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According to Do, the path toward ICO regulations will require a re-examination of applicable financial reporting requirements. In a draft paper submitted to the committee, the FSC listed white papers, investor prospectuses, and security declarations among other possible reporting obligations, as is the case with stock market listings.

While stating that white papers will differ across different ICOs, the FSC maintained that such documents should include sections devoted to detailed project descriptions, virtual asset class, information about major backers, and underlying technology among others. The FSC draft paper also called for detailed information on transaction risks, associated taxes, and fees. Plus the money received in the ICO must be deposited to a bank and this has to be detailed on accounting reports.

While the ICO ban reversal remains a possibility, the country’s financial leadership continues to push for the implementation of the planned 20% tax on crypto gains above 2.5 million won ($2,100). This push comes despite significant objections from opposition lawmakers.

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Osato is a news reporter at The Block as part of the crypto ecosystems team that focuses on DAO governance, staking, blockchain layers, and DeFi. He was previously a news reporter at Cointelegraph. Based in Lagos, Nigeria, he enjoys crosswords, poker, and attempting to beat his Scrabble high score. Follow him on Twitter at @OsatoNomayo.